Wednesday, September 9, 2015

3 Olympian deities in classical Greek and Roman religion, with details

Friedrich Stahl (German, 1863-1940) Portrait of Diana Silvarum
Friedrich Stahl (German, 1863-1940)
Portrait of Diana Silvarum
signed, dated and inscribed 'Fried/Stahl-/Florenz/1920' (lower left); inscribed 'DIANA SILVARUM.CULTRIX.CASTISSIMA.EST' (upper edge)
oil on panel 
35.5 x 27cm (14 x 10 5/8in)

Diana Silvarum. Stahl portrays his sitter as Diana, the hunter Goddess with her decorated quiver subtly slung over her shoulder. The inscription in stylised Latin lettering roughly translated as 'Diana of the forest is devoted and chaste', gives a sense of this not being a straight forward commissioned portrait, but something much more intimate and important. Stahl was pulled in two directions in his career; the pull of society pictures depicting bourgeois subjects with Impressionist influenced brushwork working against his more radical tendency as embodied by this portrait. 

Friedrich Stahl,  (German, 1863-1940), studied at the Munich Academy in 1878. At the age of 21 he moved into his own studio in Berlin where he was active from 1886 until 1898. He co-founded the 'Vereinigung der XI' which had its first exhibition in 1892 at the Galerie Schulte in Berlin. He was later appointed as a member of the Society of German Watercolour Painters and for a period was active in the Munich Secession.

Stahl travelled to England in 1899 in order to further his interest and study of the Pre-Raphaelites that were the foundation of the English brotherhood, the template for much of his own work for the remainder of his career.

The artist subsequently moved to Florence in 1904, where he remained until 1913 studying the works of the early Italian Renaissance. The present lot is a direct result of this influence. 

After a brief time in Munich in 1914 Stahl moved to Feldafing for 12 years where it is likely the present lot was painted. He then returned to Rome in 1925, eventually dying there in 1940 after receiving the Goethe medal under the direction of Martin Bormann. More 

Jan Brueghel the Younger Hendrick van Balen Antwerp 1601 - 1678 Antwerp 1575 - 1632 VENUS, CERES AND BACCHUS brushed on the reverse: no 1067 and charged on the reverse with the arms of the Violieren Chamber of Rhetoricans in Antwerp oil on oak panel 52.5 by 86.4 cm.; 20 5/8  by 34 in.
Jan Brueghel the Younger Hendrick van Balen Antwerp 1601 - 1678 Antwerp 1575 - 1632
brushed on the reverse: no 1067 and charged on the reverse with the arms of the Violieren Chamber of Rhetoricans in Antwerp
oil on oak panel
52.5 by 86.4 cm.; 20 5/8  by 34 in.

This Painting This is amongst Jan Brueghel the Younger and Hendrick van Balen’s most successful collaborations. It is an optimistic scene, with Venus, Bacchus and Ceres enjoying the plentiful bounty of a summer’s harvest that continues apace in the fields beyond. The subject provided the perfect marriage of Van Balen’s idealised and highly polished figures with the intricate handling of Brueghel’s brush for the landscape and still life elements. More

Jan Brueghel the Younger; (13 September 1601 – 1 September 1678) was a Flemish Baroque painter, and the son of Jan Brueghel the Elder. He was born and died in the 17th century in Antwerp. He was trained by his father and spent his career producing works in a similar style. Along with his brother Ambrosius, he produced landscapes, allegorical scenes and other works of meticulous detail. Brueghel also copied works by his father and sold them with his father's signature. His work is distinguishable from that of his parent by being less well executed and lighter.

Jan the Younger was traveling in Italy when his father died of cholera, and swiftly returned to take control of the Antwerp studio. After the death of his father he changed his signature from 'Brueghel' to 'Breughel'. He soon established himself and was made dean of the Guild of Saint Luke in 1630. That same year he was commissioned by the French court to paint Adam Cycle. In the following years, he also produced paintings for the Austrian court, and worked independently in Paris, before returning to Antwerp in 1657. More

Hendrick van Balen or Hendrick van Balen I (1574 or 1575 in Antwerp – 17 July 1632 in Antwerp) was a Flemish Baroque painter and stained glass designer. He played an important role in the renewal of Flemish painting in the early 17th century. He became a member of the Antwerp Guild of Saint Luke in 1592-1593 at the age of 17. In 1608-1609 he was the second dean of the Guild and in 1609-1610 he was the first dean.

From about 1595 to 1602 he studied art while traveling in Italy. On his return to Antwerp, he became a member of the Guild of Romanists. It was a condition of membership that the member had visited Rome. In the year 1613 the Guild chose him as its dean.

Van Balen led for over 30 years a successful workshop and had many pupils. He was the teacher of his son Jan van Balen, Anthony van Dyck and Frans Snyders. He was also a contemporary of many of the other famous Flemish artists, such as the Brueghels, Jan and Pieter. More

Benedetto Gennari CENTO 1633 - 1715 BOLOGNA DIANA AND ENDYMION oil on canvas 177 by 224.5 cm.;  69 3/4  by 88 1/2  in.
Benedetto Gennari - CENTO 1633 - 1715 BOLOGNA
oil on canvas
177 by 224.5 cm.;  69 3/4  by 88 1/2  in.

In Greek mythology, the moon goddess, Selene, drives her moon chariot across the heavens, although she was also regarded as the personification of the moon itself. Selene is best known for her affair with the beautiful mortal Endymion, the young shepherd who used to sleep on a mountain, and with whom she had fifty daughters. The late 7th-century – early 6th-century BC poet Sappho had apparently already mentioned Selene and Endymion's history. In Roman mythology, Diana has the attributes of Selene and she was mentioned as the goddess who falls in love with Endymion. Both goddesses were regarded as lunar goddesses, except for the fact that in Roman mythology, Diana became a virgin goddess. More

Benedetto Gennari II (October 19, 1633 – December 9, 1715) was an Italian painter active during the Baroque period. He trained at the workshop of the celebrated master, Guercino, hence his style was always very close to that of his teacher. Upon Guercino's death, Gennari inherited his studio which he ran with his brother Cesare.

With a restless spirit, Gennari traveled to Paris in March 1672 to work for the court of King Louis XIV. The French nobility received him with open arms, and the multitude of commissions encouraged him to prolong his stay. In September 1674, he moved to London where he became court painter to King Charles II of England and his successor James II. He painted allegorical and mythological scenes, and above all portraits. Catherine of Braganza and Mary of Modena, Catholic wives of Protestant kings, commissioned artworks for their private worship.

Gennari had to leave England when King James was dethroned; he followed James's court to Saint-Germain-en-Laye in 1689. By 1692, he was back in Bologna.

Gennari was an outstanding portraitist who eventually developed a style far removed from the principles taught in the school of Guercino. In the mature phase of his style, he came to acquire characteristics of the art of northern Europe, which he learned through his travels. In 1709, he was one of the founding members of the Accademia Clementina. More